At the University of Dallas, there are two academic calendars, the Semester calendar and the Trimester calendar.
On the Semester calendar, sometimes referred to as the traditional academic calendar, students attend school during the Fall and Spring semesters and Summer is ALWAYS vacation (the annual vacation). This is the academic calendar of Constantin College, Braniff Graduate School of Liberal Arts and the School of Ministry.
On the Trimester calendar at UD, there is no one season that is identified as the vacation term. There are three academic terms per year, a fall term of 12 weeks, a spring term of 12 weeks and a summer term of 12 weeks. Think of it as the "Verizon model of education" - customers can access programs and services year around. There is no cutback in programs or services because the provider is "on vacation." This is the academic calendar of the Graduate School of Management (GSM).
F-1 students in GSM are eligible for one Annual Vacation per calenar year when they have completed an "academic year," that is, two consecutive trimesters of full-time enrollment. That means that depending upon when a GSM student begins their program, their "Vacation" could be fall, spring or summer.
Note: GSM students are not required to take an Annual Vacation. They can choose to continue full-time enrollment. Then the opportunity for an Annual Vacation can roll forward.
The International office is required to report to SEVIS when students are full-time enrolled and when they are on their Annual Vacation. To provide that information, GSM students are required to complete an Annual Vacation Request Form when choosing to take their Annual Vacation. Vacation Request forms should be turned before the term begins but MUST be completed and submitted no later than 30 days after the term begins. Click here for the Vacation Request Form.
Q. What is an Annual Vacation?
A. In its simplest form, it is a period of 3 - 3.5 months when students are not attending school full-time. Students can choose to enroll part-time during vacations terms if the courses they need are offered during that vacation term.
Q. I want to go back home for couple weeks after the fall semester (or trimester). I will be back in January and enrolled full-time for the spring term. Is that my Annual Vacation?
A. No. That is called the "break" between terms.
Q. (from a Constantin student) When I come back to school in August for my fall term I have only 6 credits remaining in my program. Can I be enrolled less than full time during the fall term?
A. You can be enrolled less than full time (even following your Annual Vacation) when it is your final term and you have fewer then 12 credits remaining in your program.
Q. (from a GSM student) If I am eligible for an Annual Vacation, can I still take it even if when I return I have only my Capstone or Thesis class remaining to complete my degree?
A. Yes. Eligibility for your Annual Vacation is based only on your having been enrolled full-time the two terms preceding the Vacation term. Having fewer than 9 credtis remaining in your program upon your return has no bearing on Vacation eligibility.
Q. (from a GSM student) I transferred to the university of Dallas in January after having been full-time enrolled during the fall at my previous school. Do I still need to be enrolled full-time for two terms in GSM before being eligible for my Annual Vacation?
A. No. Your full-time enrollment at your previous school counts towards your eligibility for an Annual Vacation during the summer term. Vacation eligibility is based on full-time enrollment in F-1 status. You can meet that standard by enrollment at two different schools.
Q. If I want take a few classes during my Annual Vacation, is there a limit as to how many credits I can take?
A. (directed to a Semester system student) You can take as many credits as you want or that are offered. Regardless of the number of credits you take, you are still considered to be on your Annual Vacation.
A. (directed to GSM student) Assuming you are staying in the US or going outside the US for only briefly during your Annual Vacation, you can only take 8.5 or fewer credits. If you are outside the US for your entire vacation period, you cantake 9 or more credits on-line. However, because you are out of the country, that term will still be counted as your Annual Vacation term. Upon return to Irving, two terms of full-time enrollment will be required before you are eligible for another Annual Vacation.